TOKYO (Reuters) – Panasonic Corp on Wednesday said it expects operating profit growth to be flat this business year as component shortages and rising material costs continued to pose a risk to earnings.

The Japanese company forecast operating profit of 360 billion yen in the year to March 31, 2023, little changed from the 357 billion it made in the previous business year.

That prediction is 5.9% lower than a mean 382.7 billion yen profit based on forecasts from 20 analysts, Refinitiv data shows.

Like other companies Panasonic has been hurt by rising prices for materials such as nickel and copper for batteries, which shot higher after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Chief Executive Officer Yuki Kusumi said last month said that the company could not pass all those price increases on to customers.

The company has also been tackling continued shortages of components caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, with strict lockdowns in China spurring concerns of further supply chain problems going forward.

In the three months to March 31 Panasonic posted operating profit of 83.3 billion yen compared with a profit of 31.8 billion yen a year ago. That result was worse than an estimated mean of 85.5 billion yen profit from nine analysts surveyed by Refinitiv.

(Reporting by Tim Kelly; Editing by Tom Hogue & Simon Cameron-Moore)